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Bradford Face Expulsion from League

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 23/05/2002

BRADFORD CITY, who sacked their entire first team today in an attempt to cut costs after going into administration, face being expelled from the Football League after having received a warning from the FA not to renege on players' contracts.

If action is taken against the Bantams by the football authorities it could have severe implications for The Mariners, who themselves are asking their players to renegotiate their contracts with Town as a way for the club to cope with the loss of income caused by the collapse of ITV Digital.

Town chairman Peter Furneaux has indicated that the only alternative to reducing the players' wages is for Grimsby themselves to go into administration, following which players could be released from the club without compensation. However, possible expulsion from the league makes this option less attractive!

PFA Deputy chief executive Mick McGuire reacted: "We hope the Football League will be very supportive in ensuring they don't go ahead with this. To say we're shocked and disgusted is an understatement - clubs have contracts to follow which are sacrosanct.

"If administrators choose to disregard regulations in this way that has far-reaching implications for football as a whole - players can then unilaterally breach contracts in the way the Bradford administrators have done.

"If everyone disregarded what they had promised that would set a precedent and a base mark for other clubs to do that.

"It sends its own message to Bradford when a club behave as dishonourably as this. It's disgusting and puts the whole game in jeopardy."

Fans are naturally speculating that the development is perfect timing to allow Rangers and Celtic to enter the Nationwide League, provided of course two clubs are expelled from its First Division. Ironically Bradford were one of the chief supporters of this proposal!

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